The working group “Alternative method development for environmental toxicity testing” led by Prof. Ellen Fritsche is looking for a student (f/m/d) for a Master Thesis with the title:
Development of a new approach methodology (NAM) for cognitive function defects for regulatory application
Human brain development is a complex series of neurodevelopmental processes sensitive to harmful chemicals. In this project, you will be part of the current paradigm change in human toxicology by developing new approach methodologies for human risk assessment of chemicals. The created new approach methodology will contain a battery of animal-free in vitro but also in silico tests. The NAM will be able to predict the effects of chemicals on the developing brain, especially those leading to decreased cognition as manifested in intellectual disability, autism spectrum disorder, or learning disabilities. Your work will consist of both wet lab and computational work. First, you will optimize and use a novel in vitro assay measuring the electrical activity of neural networks. Second, you will characterize the used cell model to enable the quantitative in vitro to in vivo extrapolation that is necessary for the regulatory acceptance of the assay. Third, you will collect data from scientific publications to build a physiological map of the developing brain and develop adverse outcome pathways (AOPs). AOPs delineate the underlying mechanisms of how chemicals interact with a molecular target in the brain during its development and lead to the final outcome of decreased cognition in children. No computational skills are required for this master project because it will be carried out in the framework of the highly internationally cooperative European project called ONTOX which gathers experts from different domains.
Additional information about the project:
- project website https://ontox-project.eu/
- LinkedIn links https://www.linkedin.com/company/ontox/
- Our working group is looking for a motivated student with a high level of commitment, fun at work, motivation, communication skills, and team spirit.
- You are enthusiastic, curious, and wish to move science forward.
- You have a bachelor degree in life/environmental sciences (biology, (bio)medical sciences, pharmaceutical sciences, bioengineering sciences, (eco)toxicology, environmental health, or equivalent).
- You have good written and oral knowledge of the English language.
- Experience with adherent cell culture is desirable.
- Educational courses about in vitro, in silico, and regulatory topics organized by the consortium.
- Master thesis project focused on the current needs of the European risk assessment.
- Implementation of your work into tools for regulatory application.
- Being part of a big international consortium to build your professional network.
- Help the world in the transition to animal-free methods.
- Pleasant working atmosphere and friendly team.
As early as possible.
Please address your application (short letter of motivation, CV, qualification certificates), preferably electronically to Bewerbung@IUF-Duesseldorf.de:
Prof. Ellen Fritsche & Dr. Eliska Kuchovska
IUF – Leibniz-Institut für umweltmedizinische Forschung
Auf’m Hennekamp 50
Application documents submitted by post are not returned. Documents for applicants not considered are destroyed appropriately once the procedure is complete.